As part of Phase III of Stitch Sainte Luce, we are conducting a series of capacity building workshops for the Stitch women on health issues. Much research and planning is going into these sessions so that the women can get as much from them as possible. The women said some of their main concerns were nutrition, malaria, eye care, diarrhoea and backache.
Lea beginning her hand washing demonstration
We decided to do the first of the seminars on hand washing, as effective hand washing can reduce the risk of diarrhoea and other bacterial infections. From a business perspective, it is very important that the Stitch women wash their hands in order to keep the fabrics clean.
The first of these seminars was centred on WaSH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) took place last week with the help of Lea from Project Malio. Lea is a fantastic public speaker and is truly enigmatic and manages to make all of her talks engaging and funny.
She spoke to the women about the importance of hand washing and explained the best way to wash your hands. She then gave group activities with flash cards, to encourage knowledge retention.
Lea using flashcards to explain good handwashing practice
At times, Lea had the women in hysterical laughter. She talked about the importance of toilet hygiene, explaining how important it is to use soap when when washing your hands to avoid illness.
Cleire, Fideline and Guerceline
Stitch collaborated with Lea from the health department and with the Pioneer volunteers to build tippy taps for the Stitch association. Here is Yvon and George building the tap outside of the Stitch latrine.
Lea instructing Pioneer volunteer George how to build a tippy tap
There were many giggles when the women first used the taps and there was a lot of water flying around. In the end they all got the hang of it and they are very happy to have two taps, one outside the toilet and one directly outside the studio.
Hambrolline, Nesiteni, Esterline and Velestine learning how to use the tippy tap
We were very happy with the result from this first health talk. All of the women seemed to learn a lot from the seminar and we hope it will have a tangible result. The next talk is on the benefits of the moringa plant for health and nutrition. We will be planting moringa seedlings around the studio so that the women can have moringa tea while they are embroidering.